Social Media Algos Favour Right, Violence; Response To A ‘Vulgar Index’

China enacts law justifying LAC action, Karnataka intelligence snoops on churches, Priyanka forcing UP BJP to refocus on the real world, court rules it’s legal to read Bhagat Singh

A newsletter from The Wire & Galileo Ideas | Contributors: MK Venu, Seema Chishti, Siddharth Varadarajan, Sidharth Bhatia, Sushant Singh and Tanweer Alam | Editor: Pratik Kanjilal

Snapshot of the day

October 25, 2021    

Pratik Kanjilal

The dirt on social media platforms is coming out, and their effects on India are particularly shocking (see ‘right wing algos’ below).

In Kashmir, Amit Shah commended curfews and internet shutdowns, which had apparently “saved” the lives of Kashmiri youth. He also offered a ‘roadmap’: Assembly elections after delimitation, and restoration of statehood will follow. This has been a contentious issue.

 

India held the high moral ground on secularism but now, Sheikh Hasina says: “In Bangladesh, we are all equal citizens.” She has urged the ruling Awami League leaders to step out and resist attacks on temples, homes and properties of religious minorities. Meanwhile, PM Modi’s much-hyped “Neighbourhood First” policy fares poorly.

Christians in Karnataka not only face a “survey”, it’s the state’s spooks snooping on churches. On October 16, the Additional Director General of Police, State Intelligence Department, ordered top police and intelligence officials to gather information about “authorised and unauthorised” churches in Karnataka, The Quint reports.

Filmmaker Prakash Jha was roughed up by Bajrang Dal members on the set of his web series in Bhopal. Cellphones videos show Bajrang Dal members chasing the crew and beating one mercilessly with a metal light stand. They said Jha’s Ashram, starring Bobby Deol, is an assault on Hinduism.

 

Gautam Navlakha, accused in the Elgar Parishad case, has been moved to the ‘anda circle’ of Taloja Jail, according to his partner Sahba Husain. The high security layout was designed for holding active terrorists. Husain says that his weekly phone calls have been disbarred, endangering the 70-year-old’s health and his defence.    

Journalist Vittala Malekudiya and his father, from a tribal community in Dakshin Kannada, were arrested in 2012 for criminal conspiracy, sedition and terror. The evidence: Bhagat Singh’s books and a letter saying that their village would boycott elections. Finally, a court has said that possessing a book by Bhagat Singh is legal.

Sanjay Patil of Sangli, Maharashtra, yesterday quipped that the Enforcement Directorate will not come after him because he is a BJP MP. Harshavardhan Patil, who quit the Congress for the BJP before the 2019 Assembly polls, had said that he was getting “sound sleep” in the saffron party as there are “no inquiries” by central agencies.

“The impact of COVAX’s problems were made worse earlier this year when India’s Serum Institute… was ordered by the Indian government to halt exports. An additional 600 million dose deal, struck between New Delhi and the Serum Institute last month, has left officials at COVAX, the university and the company concerned that projections will have to be further cut,” reports Financial Times.

A recent project in Agra, Allahabad and Haridwar has found that up to 25% of all plastic waste was littered and not routed into recycling.

India lost to Pakistan in the T20 match in Dubai, for the first time ever. Mentor MS Dhoni came out to congratulate the Pakistani team, and there were some extraordinary images, both heartening and perplexing.

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